Lord of the Dance "Nataraja"

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This illustration depicts Shiva or God in His aspect of Nataraja, The Cosmic Dancer. In Hindu scriptures Shiva is represented as having worked out the infinite modes of rhythm in the dance of Universal Creation, Preseavation and Destruction.
Lord Shiva holds in a right hand the Damaru, a tiny hourglass-shaped drum, symbolizing Aum (sound ,vibration), the original cause of creation. Agni (fire) in a left hand suggest the flame of Spirit that informs the material universe with consciousness and life. The lower right hand is outspread in the Abh,aya pose, “the gesture that dispels fear.” The lower left hand is extended in the Karibasta attitude, signifying benediction.

With his right foot Shiva crushes the Demon Muyalaka, representing Mahamaya, the cosmic illusion responsible for man’s contradictory experiences of life and death. The upraised left foot symbolizes the consciousness that has escaped beyond the world- illusion to dwell in the endless bliss of the Self. On Shiva’s head is the Yogi’s Jatamukuta (twisted locks of hair bound in a knot).